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Summary

The service of Britannia is not for the faint of heart - or conscience...

After defeating a clockwork army bent upon regicide, the sorceress Emma Bannon and genius detective Archibald Clare have come to respect each other's skills, despite the fact that magic and logic are usually opposing forces. So when the Queen asks Emma to track down a missing doctor who holds the key to a deadly new weapon, Archibald's deductive talent may be just what she needs to find the man, before his destructive discovery sets the entire capital city ablaze...The game is afoot. And the Red Plague rises.

©2013 Lilith Saintcrow (P)2013 Hachette Audio

Critic reviews

"Unlike so much current pseudo-steampunk this isn't just fantasy with cogs stuck on. A really good read." (SFX)
"Rockets through a Britain-that-wasn't with magic and industrial mayhem with a firm nod to Holmes." (Patricia Briggs)

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  • Paul McMahon
  • 26-02-14

Story telling style over plot.

Introspection seems to have taken over plot development; exposition, particularly to set character, in “The Iron Wyrm Affair”. The more I heard of the internal thoughts, the harder I found it to believe in the characters … hard boiled sorceress and unparalleled logic machine … Bannon always self-doubting, and worrying about it; genius detective (supposed to be good at putting data into context, continually taken by surprise by the most obvious developments) Archibald Clare always talking to himself about how he shouldn’t be thinking about …

The first book was full of steampunk description, “fantastical mech monsters”, intriguing; this is all about confused, out of character - as they are represented from narration, stream of consciousness self-characterization.

All this affects Jane Collingwood’s effort. Stream of consciousness requires different ‘voice’; there is so much of it here it is difficult to endure.

The development of plot was more interesting in the first book. Here is just seems to drag itself into the narrative fighting against the flow.